Disturbances broke out on Jerusalem’s Temple Mount Tuesday as police sought to contain a number of minor incidents in and around the compound.Border guards manning the entrance to the flash-point holy site blocked a group of Muslim youth from entering after reportedly discovering they carried bottles and other items intended to be used as projectiles.
In a clash that ensued, a number of suspects were detained for questioning, including one minor, 13, who was arrested after pelting the officers with eggs.
In a separate incident, a Muslim woman, 51, was arrested after biting a female police officer on the hand, while a Jewish visitor was escorted from the compound after he tried to remove some dirt from the complex for private use in his upcoming wedding.
Clashes between Muslim visitors and Israeli border guards have become an almost weekly occurrence on the Temple Mount, which is considered Judaism’s holiest site and the third-holiest site in Islam.
On Monday, Israeli police arrested a Temple Mount guard from the Islamic Waqf following a scuffle over allowing a group of Arab youths on the site. Officers reportedly believed that the youths were planning to disturb the peace.
After police prevented the youths from entering the site, the guard attacked the Israeli security forces, who subdued him with pepper spray and arrested him.
Minor skirmishes also rocked the site two weeks ago when Palestinians were angered over Jews’ access to the compound on Tisha B’av, an annual day of Jewish mourning for the destruction of the two ancient Temples that stood on the site. Israeli police briefly entered the al-Aqsa Mosque at the southern end of the compound during those clashes to shut the doors and lock rioters inside.
Visits by Jews are allowed to the complex, but Jewish prayer is prohibited.